I had a very fine Thanksgiving Holiday with my family in SoCal (southern California) and it is about to end in a few hours. I am headed back to Portland this morning with a small band of adventurers and we all can’t wait to hit up the hot springs throw bills at the pretty ladies that dance all night and clash whiskey glasses together. cuz thats what we do, we be celebrating all the time, walking paths just looking, looking breathlessly. then celebrating what we saw.

so Irvine CA is where i got my most recent look into suburban life. My man Villar and me stopped in the District, which is a huge mall complex right off the highway into Irvine, and ordered a coffee. The District has a Target, a Chik-Fill-A and an In and Out Burger joint for starters. There is Peets and a copy shop, a couple of video stores and some specialty lamp shops. Its real clean and the people that walk around seem to be alien slugs sliding across a strange landscape half-heartedly looking for their spaceship back home.

My parents say,

Hey, come meet us at the Burger King across from Target in the District.

We’re like, shit, no problem

We finish our coffees and head out leisurely to the BK that should be right down the sidewalk/street … (my family was already in Irvine with my nephew and Villar had driven me down from El Lay to meet them). Long story short cuz I am way behind on whats been going on:

Irvine is a maze of complexes called the District surrounded by neighborhoods with perfect grass and the same old cookie cutter pseudo adobe homes and everyone has an SUV that they keep running while they wait for the wife to come out so junior can watch a DVD … the Costco gas station is constantly pumping away to feed these peoples’ insecurities. They have never even pissed on a tree let alone gone camping, but they have the latest in “off road” technology.

Rolling through SoCal gave me a glimpse of what it will take to really turn the US around. The suburban sprawl is addictive, entrenched, fearful, rich and growing. If anyone has pictures or comments about the suburban empire in the US — like them highway spring-ups and such — please send them in so I don’t have to tell the whole story here …

I had a great time with my family. My nephew is brilliant, sweet and super cute … a few things he said:

First meeting after a few years: “Hey Unca Saschi! its so good to see you, I love you! We haven’t hung out in a while, I got all sorts of stuff, i got my lightsabers and spiderman stuff … we’re gonna do all sorts of stuff … man its gonna be awesome …”

Dad rolls in while we are playing “piece o’ me” which is short for “you wanna piece o me?” (call for a wrestling match) and says:

Hey, you two better quit playin grabass! (grabass is dads version of piece of me) and Jason goes:

Yeah Unca Saschi! Quit grabbin my ass!


I am already back in Portland after a few days with my tribe in Oakland. Kicked it with Tenz and Aliya, Big Scott, Johnny and janica, Doc and Therin … so we drank whiskey and hollered at each for a few days then finally drove north to Ptown … i yapped with my main men about all the things that have changed since I turned 30 and came back to the US after a perfect 8 yrs in China … we be movin to the next stage of things and it feels good to know I am never really alone …

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Sascha Matuszak
Sascha Matuszak

One thought on “Irvine, CA

  1. Hey, I know exactly how you feel. I’m from Irvine, CA but live in Eugene,OR for most of the year. I came back for winter vacation and it was quite depressing. There are no bars or lounges here so it’s really pretty boring if you’re 18-28. It’s nearly impossible to walk or take the bus anywhere since everything is spread out in different strip malls. I was telling my friend that the District reminds me of an apocalyptic sci-fi film, but she didn’t get it.

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